Asia-Pacific shares trade higher ahead of U.S. inflation report

Thai baht ‘strongest recovery’ among regional currencies as China reopens: Credit Suisse

Credit Suisse says China's renminbi will cloud what the US dollar does in the short term

The Thai baht will “recover the strongest” among other Southeast Asian currencies when China reopens, said Max Lin, Asia foreign exchange strategist at Credit Suisse.

Lin claimed Thailand had not implemented any form of travel restrictions on Chinese tourists and that the government “remains very supportive” of freedom of travel.

“It seems there is still a lot of tourism demand in the region,” he said, pointing to reports of Chinese outbound tourism activities on travel booking websites.

The Thai Baht has strengthened again to levels seen in April 2022 and last stood at 33.41 against the greenback.

—Ly Yingshan

Apple’s Asian suppliers mostly drop after report on in-house display production

Shares of some of Apple’s suppliers in Asia fell after Bloomberg reported that the company will start producing displays in-house by 2024.

South Korea-listed shares of LG Display fell 3.35% in afternoon trading immediately following the report, while Samsung Electronics traded 0.17% higher. Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. also traded 0.41% lower.

Separately, shares listed in Shenzhen of BOE Technology Corporationor Jingdongfang, increased more than 1% when Reuters reported that the supplier to Apple was planning to invest a significant amount to build new factories in Vietnam.

— Jihye Lee

Cryptocurrency Trades Higher Even As Coinbase Announces Layoffs

Cryptocurrencies inching higher after crypto company Coinbase announced plans to cut its workforce by 20% to preserve cash during the crypto market downturn.

Bitcoin the last trade was 1.55% higher at $17,459.63 according to Coin Metrics. Ether rose 1% to $1,337.85.

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Other cryptocurrencies like Cronos and Cardano also rallied.

CEO Brian Armstrong said there was “no way” to reduce costs and increase the chances of “doing well in all situations” without reducing headcount.

—Lee Ying Shan, Kate Rooney

Philippine finance minister says inflation will return to as low as 2% by 2024

Inflation in the Philippines expected to return to target between 2% and 4% by 2024: Finance Secretary

Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno said inflation in the Philippines is expected to return to the government’s target range over the next two years.

Diokno said he is confident that average inflation for 2023 will be between 2.5% and 4.5% before falling to 2% to 4% next year, he told CNBC on the sidelines of the Financial Forum. Asia in Hong Kong.

According to government data, headline inflation in the Philippines remains high, rising to 8.1 percent in December 2022 from 8% the previous month.

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Felipe Medalla announced on Monday that interest rates will be increased by 25 to 50 basis points in February. Diokno added that he expects the central bank to pivot some time this year.

“There’s also a chance that we’ll cut back at some point this year as we may go overboard,” he said.

— Charmaine Jacob

Australia’s consumer prices rose 7.3% in November on higher food and housing prices

Australia’s consumer price index rose 7.3% year-on-year in November, according to data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, a sign that inflationary pressures have not yet slowed.

The figure was in line with Reuters expectations and was higher than the previous month’s 6.9%.

Housing, food and transportation were among the top components driving the price increase, the release said.

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Separately, Australia reported sales for November up 1.4% from a month ago, thanks to sales on Black Friday.

— Ly Ung Son

CNBC Pro: This Global ETF Is The Only Fund To Post Annual Returns For The Last Decade

The only stock ETF with a positive annualized return over the past decade was revealed by CNBC Pro.

It is the only fund out of nearly 7,000 worldwide stock ETFs screened by CNBC Pro that has had no negative year-over-year returns between January 1, 2013 and December 31, 2022.

According to Koyfin data, it also gave investors a 14% compound annual growth rate for the same period, significantly higher than funds that track the broader index.

CNBC Pro subscribers can read more here.

— Ganesh Rao

South Korea’s unemployment rate rises to 11-month high

Government data showed South Korea’s unemployment rate rose 3.3% in December, marking an 11-month high.

This index is higher than the figure of 2.9% in November

Despite the higher unemployment figure, the total number of people employed in 2022 will reach 28,089 million, up from 816,000 a year ago.

– Lee Ying Shan, Jihye Lee

CNBC Pro: ‘A costly mistake: Citi says stop hoarding cash – and reveals two areas to invest in

Investors had a rough 2022 as stocks and bonds fell amid broader market turmoil.

While many seek refuge in the relative safety of cash, Citi says it’s time to put it to work and outlines two ways to deploy it for greater returns.

Professional subscribers can read more here.

— Zavier Ong

Fed should be politically independent while tackling inflation, says Powell

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell on Tuesday emphasized the need for the central bank to remain unaffected by politics while addressing persistently high inflation.

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In a speech to Sweden’s Riksbank, Powell noted that stabilizing prices requires making tough decisions that may be unpopular politically.

“Price stability is the cornerstone of a healthy economy and provides the public with huge benefits over time. But restoring price stability when inflation is high may require measures. It’s not common in the short term when we raise interest rates to slow down the economy,” the president said in prepared remarks.

“The absence of direct political control over our decisions allows us to take these necessary measures without considering short-term political factors,” he added.

—Jeff Cox

Copper hits highest price since June

Copper hit a high not seen since June.

The metal was up just under 1.3% at $4.0775. It posted a high of $4.0835, the highest since it hit $4,1160 on June 17.

Copper has gained about 7% since 2023 began.

— Gina Francolla, Alex Harring

Coinbase lays off 20% of its workforce

Shares of Coinbase jumped 6% after the crypto exchange operator announced plans to cut its workforce by 20% to cut costs.

The layoffs will affect 950 jobs and mark the company’s second round of cuts in recent months. Coinbase laid off 18% of its workforce in June in preparation for a potential recession and crypto winter, saying it has grown “too fast” during the bull market.

The crypto market has been under pressure following the collapse of FTX, one of the largest miners in the industry.

Coinbase says the new round of layoffs will reduce operating costs by 25% for the quarter ended March, according to a new regulatory filing.

— Kate Rooney, Samantha Subin


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